COMIC BOOK CONFIDENTIAL is a well-constructed, succinct introduction to an underappreciated art form.
The film opens and closes with references to one of the comics' bleakest hours, when pop psychologists and politicians convened congressional hearings on the comic-book industry in 1954. The 10-cent illustrated magazines, especially the multitudinous horror- and crime-oriented titles, got blamed
for just about every act of juvenile delinquency in the country. It wasn't always that way. Comics were started by simply repackaging color-supplement "Sunday funnies" and selling them to avid readers without the bulk of a newspaper attached. Soon imaginative artists and...